Polls Shift: Commonwealth Observers Depart Nigeria

The Commonwealth Observer Group said on Wednesday that its personnel have departed Nigeria following the postponement of Nigeria’s general elections from Feb. 14 and 28 to March 28 and April 11.

The Communications Officer of the group, Mr Will Henley told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that the group was looking forward to the rescheduled election dates.

According to him, the support staff from the Commonwealth Secretariat has also departed.

“The observers have now departed Nigeria, including the support staff from the Commonwealth Secretariat,” Henley told NAN.

Henley said that the group would issue a statement on any further update regarding the observers’ re-deployment.

NAN reports that a statement by Dr Bakili Muluzi, Chairperson of the group on the postponement of the elections, said the group respected INEC’s decision on the polls shift.

Muluzi said the group was invited by the Independent National Electoral Commission to observe the elections.

He said the delegation had arrived in Nigeria on Feb. 7 for the elections shortly before it was postponed.

“Soon after our arrival, we were informed of the decision taken by the Chairman of INEC to postpone the elections by six weeks in the light of the security situation facing Nigeria.

“We understand and respect this decision, taken in difficult circumstances,” Muluzi had said. (NAN)

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